It probably sums up Ireland's attacking performance in Tbilisi that Ireland's strongest performances came from the centre-back pairing of Shane Duffy and John Egan.

Duffy, a late inclusion to the squad after he was passed fit by the Brighton medical team, was partnered by Egan on what was the Cork man's first competitive start for his country and the pair were commanding on a day where goal scoring opportunities were at a premium.

The hosts failed to hit the target once over the 90 minutes, while the closest Ireland came to breaking the deadlock was from a glancing Egan header in the fourth minute.

"Sometimes you just need that little bit of luck," said Egan, who marked his sixth cap with the official man of the match award.

"Unfortunately, it hit the post and came out. I heard someone say 'yes' as soon as I headed it, but unfortunately it wasn’t. We dug deep out there for the result and we were well worthy of at least a point.

"We could have lost it in the end so we have to take the positives."

Mick McCarthy isn’t the first Irish manager to pair the two defenders together and the Sheffield United man says it was pleasing to operate alongside the Derry man once again.

"We were talking about it today and we were saying the last time we probably played together as a two was probably U-19 or U-21 level.

"It was great. I know Shane a long time, since I was 15, 16. It’s great to try and build a partnership and hopefully we can keep doing well."

The point was enough to move Ireland to 12 points and, for the time being at least, top of group D with two games remaining.

The manner of the performance will have disappointed McCarthy and his coaching team though, notwithstanding the energetic finale when substitute Aaron Connolly twice went close to marking his debut with a winner.

We wanted to win this game and I don't know what to feel. I don’t think we played our best, but it’s another point on the board

Next up is Switzerland on Tuesday night and a positive result would put the Boys in Green in a very strong position with the group concluding with Denmark’s visit to Dublin next month.

Was the dour draw however a missed opportunity to cement their Euro 2020 hopes?

"I’m not sure," Duffy tells RTÉ Sport. "It was a tough afternoon. We wanted to win this game and I don’t know what to feel. I don’t think we played our best, but it’s another point on the board.

"We could have lost it in the end so we have to take the positives."

Egan agreed with his defensive partner and was pleased that, despite 54% possession, the home side failed to muster a single shot on target.

"It’s a tough place to come and get a win, as obviously Denmark found out. Georgia are a good side. They play good football and we knew that coming over.

"Our game plan was to go out and try to get a clean sheet, try to take a chance or two and I think we had two or three decent chances. And we limited them.

"With a bit of luck we could have nicked it."